AN OFFICIAL of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs)-Northern Mindanao warned the public to brace for more aftershocks following the 5.4 magnitude earthquake last Sunday, September 24.
Phivolcs-Northern Mindanao regional chief Marcial Labininay said about 150 aftershocks have already been recorded since the tremor started around 1:48 a.m., Sunday.
The epicenter of the 5.4 magnitude quake that jolted city residents at 4:47 a.m., Sunday, was at the town of Wao, Lanao del Sur, and Bukidnon over the weekend.
Labininay said the frequency of aftershocks is normal since the depth of the quake is shallow but these can last to about 25 days or more.
"Pag ang linog mabaw tapos dako ang magnitude normal nga pilahan ka adlaw o bulan ang masinati nga mga aftershocks (If the quake is shallow and at a high magnitude, it’s normal that aftershocks may be felt of several days of months)," Labininay said.
Labininay said affected areas may feel the aftershocks at intensity 1 or 2.
The magnitude 5.4 tectonic earthquake destroyed houses and other structures in the town including Kalilangan, Bukidnon that felt the shake at intensity 6.
Labininay said Phivolcs is expected to install back the seismograph that was pulled out from Wao, Kalilangan and Pangantucan, Bukidnon last August, this year.
"Gi-pull out kini last August kay basahon mana siya unya tinigom man gud ang pagbasa so I hope mabalik na to siya (It was pulled out last August because it is to be read and the reading is by group/cluster. I hope it’ll be brought back),"Labininay said.
Labininay explained that the said device is very useful as it measures and records quakes.
According to Kalilangan town police 58 houses were damaged totally; 158 were severely damaged and 148 were partially destroyed.
Families affected by the earthquake in Kakilangan reached to 58 (high affected population; 154 families (moderate affected population; and 227 families (low affected population).
The tremor also injured 10 people in the said town.
The police also noted minor damages on government infrastructures, schools, buildings, churches, bridges, roads and water system.
Landslide on different areas were also recorded.
The police have been constantly coordinating with the local disaster risk reduction and management offices for assistance and to help in quick response.
Published in the SunStar Cagayan de Oro newspaper on September 27, 2017.